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Budget deal tricky to reach in final days of lawmakers' work

1 year 11 months 1 week ago June 09, 2015 Jun 9, 2015 Tuesday, June 09 2015 June 09, 2015 2:27 PM in News
Source: Associated Press
By: Melinda Deslatte

BATON ROUGE - Now that the House and Senate have passed strikingly different packages of budget-balancing plans, negotiations move behind closed doors as legislative leaders try to strike a deal.

The biggest stumbling block isn't necessarily the proposed spending plans or tax hikes.

One of the largest disputes is whether lawmakers will agree to Gov. Bobby Jindal's push to create a tax break that doesn't lessen anyone's taxes, but that on paper can be used to protect the Republican governor's no-tax pledge.

The Senate has been willing to go along with the paper trick. But the House has balked.

Critics call it a budget gimmick aimed solely at protecting Jindal's presidential ambitions. Supporters say they need the maneuver to escape a Jindal veto of their budget financing plans.

The legislative session ends Thursday.

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